DS

North America

Bird & Beans

by Zachary Miller - April 11, 2009, 1:47 pm PDT
Total comments: 15

4

It's a cell phone-style game on your brand-new, high-tech DSi.

Bird & Beans is one of the launch games on the DSiWare service, along with Art Style: Aquia, WarioWare: Snapped, and a few others. While it only costs 200 points ($2), it isn't worth any more than that. It is a fun distraction, but there's virtually no content, and it has the air of a cell phone game; something to play on the elevator, but nothing you'd play for more than a few minutes.

The title pretty much sums everything up. You control a bird who has a chameleon-like tongue. Your actions are limited to moving left and right and slurping up beans as they fall from the sky. The bird's tongue extends upward at a diagonal angle, and continues to extend for as long as you hold down the A button. Each consumed bean gives you points. The lower the bean is in the sky when you eat it, the lower the point value. If you get hit by a bean, you die and it's Game Over. If a bean hits the floor, that floor block disappears, limiting your movement. Blocks reappear over time automatically, or by eating a flashing bean (which restores the entire floor).

After beating the high score for the first time you'll unlock Bird & Beans 2, a variation on the original that has the bird blowing leaves around instead of using his tongue. When the leaves hit a bean, the bean explodes into more leaves. The trick here is that you can create a combo by continuously hitting beans with the same leaf pile.

Your high scores are saved, and you can view them from the game's main menu, but that's it. There are probably free Flash games on the Internet that approximate these games. It's best to save your Nintendo Points and wait for something worthwhile.

Score

Graphics Sound Control Gameplay Lastability Final
3 4 10 5 3 4
Graphics
3

The game is sprite-based, and while that isn't inherently bad, it's the quality of the sprites that's unimpressive. This game would look primitive on the original GameBoy, aside from its pretty colors.

Sound
4

The sound is instantly forgettable, but a background theme is present.

Control
10

With only left, right, and the A button, not much can go wrong. In all fairness, the game is very responsive.

Gameplay
5

The game is fun in short bursts. For what it is, the gameplay holds up pretty well.

Lastability
3

If you work on the 10th floor of a building, or you have to take a bathroom break and forgot to put a game card in the DSi, this'll get you through that short time. But you won't be tuning to Bird & Beans again once something better comes down the DSiWare pipe.

Final
4

I have buyer's remorse over a free game, so that should tell you something.

Summary

Pros
  • Fun arcade/cell phone feel
  • It's cheep (HA!)
  • Unlockable second game extends lifespan somewhat
Cons
  • Gets old after about five minutes
  • No 1-ups makes for an extremely short game
  • Second game is kind of frustrating!
Review Page 2: Conclusion

Talkback

Mop it upApril 11, 2009

Quote:

I have buyers remorse over a free game, so that should tell you something.

It may have been free in the monetary sense but it still cost you your precious free time.

Sounds like this would have made a good Game & Watch game thirty years ago...

Flames_of_chaosLukasz Balicki, Staff AlumnusApril 11, 2009

Quote from: Mop_it_up

Quote:

I have buyers remorse over a free game, so that should tell you something.

It may have been free in the monetary sense but it still cost you your precious free time.

Sounds like this would have made a good Game & Watch game thirty years ago...

In that sense you can say the same thing about those free online flash games.

UncleBobRichard Cook, Guest ContributorApril 11, 2009

>"Thats the whole game."

Really?  It seems to me you completely ignored the other half of the game... ?

JonLeungApril 12, 2009

Is this the game that's based on Pyoyo (or whatever it's called) from at least one of the WarioWare games?  I'm surprised that wasn't mentioned at all in this review if that's the case.

rbtrApril 12, 2009

Funny enough this was a "killer app" for me.  I LOVE pyoro, he is easily one of my favorite nintendo characters.  I anticipate WarioWare titles only for his appearance.  Pyoro:T is probably my favorite (from warioware touched).

I'd say this is a seriously well designed arcade game, with lot's of risk and reward.  Has that great "one more try" feeling, and an elements of surprise.  Make it past 10k and you see buildings come up, past 20k and its sepia tones, past 30k and it turns into white outlines on black, 40k it's like a rave, and I've yet to make it past that, but I will!

You also get Pyoro 2, which is a very good riff on the formula.  You spit seeds at the beans, the more you hit the more points you get, you rack up points way quick once you get good at it.

In honor of Pyoro I am changing my avatar!

Flames_of_chaosLukasz Balicki, Staff AlumnusApril 12, 2009

Yup Pyoro is in many warioware games, same stretchy tongue. There are actually many flash versions made of Pyoro and I know that the game is very addicting. I'm guessing it just wasn't Zach's cup of tea.

UncleBobRichard Cook, Guest ContributorApril 12, 2009

Quote from: rbtr

You also get Pyoro 2, which is a very good riff on the formula.

Yup.  It seems like this is an important piece of information that's missing from the review.  You're actually getting two "games" for $2.00.  They are similar, but they play different enough (scoring, ability to shoot multiple seeds at once, the falling leaves distract you, etc.)

And yes, both Pyoro games are from the original WarioWare: Mega Microgame$ from the Game Boy Advance.

NWR_pap64Pedro Hernandez, Contributing WriterApril 12, 2009

I think two bucks for this is reasonable. I mean, I've seen similar celphone games selling up to 10 bucks or more!

Also, you can easily waste more than two bucks in arcade games like Pyoro, so this seems reasonable enough.

Guys, I'm sorry I didn't unlock Bird & Beans 2 before posting the review. I did last night after it was pointed out to me (by various people), so I'll be amending the review.

Ironically, although I sort of like the original game, the unlockable game makes me mad because it's much harder to get a good score!

Rest assured that Zach has been lambasted behind the scenes for this transgression.

UncleBobRichard Cook, Guest ContributorApril 13, 2009

Thanks for fixing the review - although a 4 for a $2 game still seems rather harsh to me, but that's just my opinion. :)

By the way, you shoot seeds, not leaves in P2... The story in the original WarioWare was that Pyoro is full from all the beans he ate in P1 that he's spitting out the seeds to save himself in the second...

Quote from: UncleBob

Thanks for fixing the review - although a 4 for a $2 game still seems rather harsh to me, but that's just my opinion. :)

By this logic, no $2 game should get a negative review. NWR policy is that review scores do not weigh price as a factor. Price certainly is considered in the review text and can influence a buy/rent/skip recommendation, but the score reflects the reviewer's opinion of the game's quality. After all, game prices can and do fall over time, and gamers can and do buy older new/used games at deep discounts.

Zach believes this game isn't worth players' time; hence, his score is lower than 5 (NWR's "meh" score). A 6 would convey there are enough merits to warrant a purchase, at least under certain circumstances.

UncleBobRichard Cook, Guest ContributorApril 13, 2009

No, there are games that would deserve a negative review, even at a $2 price point.

This game is, basically, a remake of some of the many space-shooters from the early 80's.  These games were (and still are) very popular and sucked a lot of quarters back in the day.  It *is* a fun game (again, IMHO). If it were $20, then I'd understand feeling ripped off - but $2 for a new (-ish, if you don't count that it's a port from a GBA title) old-style space shooter?  If you're someone who likes this kind of game, you're nuts to skip it.

KDR_11kApril 13, 2009

I guess 2€ is reasonable even when you have WW on the GBA because unlocking Pyoro 2 on that is a chore and then some.

What I didn't like was how you couldn't move across gaps in the ground rather than, say, letting you jump and killing you if you fall into a hole. And yeah, the lack of lives is annoying, even the Game & Watch games had lives.

BTW, the ground doesn't regenerate over time, it regenerates one tile when you eat a white bean.

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Genre Action
Developer Nintendo
Players1
Controllers

Worldwide Releases

na: Bird & Beans
Release Apr 05, 2009
PublisherNintendo
RatingEveryone
jpn: Tori to Mame
Release Dec 24, 2008
PublisherNintendo
RatingAll Ages
eu: Pyoro
Release Apr 03, 2009
PublisherNintendo
Rating3+
aus: Pyoro
Release Apr 02, 2009
PublisherNintendo
RatingGeneral

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